2023 DevOps Predictions - Part 5
December 12, 2022

Industry experts offer thoughtful, insightful, and often controversial predictions on how DevOps and related technologies will evolve and impact business in 2023. Part 5 covers microservices and containers.

Start with: 2023 DevOps Predictions - Part 1

Start with: 2023 DevOps Predictions - Part 2

Start with: 2023 DevOps Predictions - Part 3

Start with: 2023 DevOps Predictions - Part 4

MORE MICROSERVICES ADOPTION IN 2023

As the DevOps ecosystem moves towards improved agility, continuous delivery, and scalability, there will be a bigger push to contain and manage services independently. In 2023, we'll see more organizations adopt microservices architecture over traditional monolithic architecture. A microservices architecture structures applications as collections of services that developers can build, deploy and maintain independently. This approach improves scalability and fault isolation by containing tasks without disrupting entire applications and negatively impacting the user experience.
Brian Galura
CEO, Convox

"HUB AND SPOKE" APPROACH

There's no question that the microservice approach is superior in most ways to legacy monolithic architectures. However, there are a number of downsides to a vast matrix of microservices. Overall complexity leads to a data ecosystem that is difficult to understand and maintain, requires many costly licenses, and forces a steep learning curve for user training and onboarding. These microservices don't perfectly bookend to each other, leaving gaps in capabilities that need to be filled with custom code and logic — and data is siloed across disparate platforms, with tenuous integrations. Moving forward, organizations will work toward a more balanced "hub and spoke" approach (e.g. they will turn to solutions that lay a complete and solid data foundation that covers business needs — the "hub" — while still integrating with microservices to allow specialization, as needed). This more balanced solution will avoid the overrotation to microservice complexity.
Ben Haynes
Co-Founder and CEO, Directus

KUBERNETES-AS-A-SERVICE

Kubernetes has been described as an operating system for containers. As workload management continues to expand to serverless and virtual machines, and the operations ecosystem (e.g., security and observability) matures and hardens, we will see Kubernetes more abstracted from users. No developer working on building an application really needs (or probably wants) to understand and manage Kubernetes. What they really want is the benefits of Kubernetes when managing their applications in production. In the same way, no developer wants to manage Linux or even the servers on which it runs, so cloud computing gave us compute as a service. Kubernetes is one layer above that compute, and a natural fit for an "as a service" offering; in 2023 we'll see that take off.
Stewart McGrath
Co-Founder and CEO, Section

KUBERNETES FOCUSED ON THE EDGE

In 2023 Kubernetes will remain a driving force for scaling containerized applications across the enterprise, but it will be focused on one frontier in particular: the edge. A 2022 survey conducted by Dimensional Research found that 35% of production Kubernetes users are already running Kubernetes at the edge, and many more plan to do so in the next 12 months. The use cases are incredibly varied and many of them have the potential to drive revenue and competitive differentiation for the companies that get them right. But the challenges are equally immense. 72% said it's currently too challenging to deploy and manage Kubernetes on edge devices, with security at the forefront. Solving these challenges is our collective mission in 2023 to help edge reach its potential!
Tenry Fu
CEO and Founder, Spectro Cloud

MANAGING KUBERNETES CLUSTERS AT SCALE

Manage Kubernetes clusters as cattle — A key trend for 2023 and beyond is to create lots of clusters and use tooling to manage 100s to 1000s of clusters at scale. The intention is to transition away from managing "clusters as pets" (a few large clusters hosting all applications) and using K8s as a true cluster operating system where the "cluster is the computer." Kubernetes at its core is also a cluster commoditization technology making it easy to create, run, and operate clusters at scale.
Eric Han
VP, Product Management, Cloud, NetApp

FULL STACK OBSERVABILITY

Containers and microservices are becoming the standard not only in application development, but also in operational software. Organizations need to run apps anywhere: In local high performance edge environments, in the cloud or in traditional on-premises data centers. That makes it more difficult to understand the interaction of applications and infrastructure. Thus, I expect that more organizations aim to reach full-stack observability and gain detailed insights into their applications, but also their IT infrastructure assets.
Thomas Lippert
Director Product Management for Checkmk, tribe29

KUBERNETES COST VISIBILITY

More organizations are adopting Kubernetes to modernize their IT environments. And while containers provide IT leaders speed and portability, we're starting to see growing cloud and Kubernetes-based budget items based on some of the complexities in managing across hybrid environments. Our data shows that 70% of IT teams implementing Kubernetes report increasing their cloud spending. Given that cloud and Kubernetes clusters are often shared by multiple teams working on various applications, it's becoming difficult to tag resources. And if multiple teams are working on various applications in different stages of development, it becomes nearly impossible to understand the breakdown of resources being used. Therefore, cost visibility of containers and microservices is something IT teams will increasingly focus on in the New Year.
Faiz Khan
CEO, Wanclouds

KUBERNETES OFFERS CLOUD COST SAVINGS

Dev and DevOps teams will find it even more imperative to rein in inefficient cloud spending in 2023 — and Kubernetes offers one of the ripest opportunities for cloud cost savings. Poor Kubernetes cost visibility across many (if not most) organizations has led to widespread overprovisioning and waste. Blank checks for cloud spend is no longer the reality, and teams will likely be implementing showbacks and/or chargebacks to mandate Kubernetes-related cloud spending more responsibly.
Rob Faraj
Co-Founder, Kubecost

SIMPLIFIED CONTAINERIZATION

Containerization has empowered users to deploy the software they need to do their jobs, without requiring the time and talent of infrastructure engineers. A new wave of containerization is on the rise, curtailing the need for highly skilled (and expensive) developers to create custom builds. Rather than ask infrastructure engineers and system administrators to become experts in builds and deployment of their code (often open-source) to different architecture and hardware targets, we will see tools that simplify containerization of that code that is secure, trusted, portable, and reproducible at massive scale, unleashing a new era of productivity, integration, and supply chain security across the ecosystem.
Gregory Kurtzer
CEO and Founder, CIQ

KUBERNETES FACES 3 ROADBLOCKS

The growing Kubernetes market will come up against three vectors in 2023: people, technology and processes. The Kubernetes skills gap will be an ongoing concern. However, many initiatives including learning platforms, templated "getting started" packs, etc. are being introduced across the industry to narrow this gap. KubeCon 2022 demonstrated that Kubernetes is still on its way up, as 64% of the attendees were first-timers, signaling a growing ecosystem and greater interest.

On the technological side, learning and operating new software and tools will be a challenge. Companies seeking to avoid this must acknowledge the importance of pushing for simplicity in operations and adding autonomous operations. Using the right cloud-native tools will help organizations get past the challenges they faced prior. You also want to make sure the tools you invest in are from vendors you can trust.

On the processes side, companies will struggle to determine a clear approach to their Kubernetes adoption and deployment. DevSecOps and operationalizing best practices to empower the platform and cloud ops team are important in eliminating these roadblocks. Although these are still rather new to organizations, there is an effective and growing cloud-native community that will provide a way forward.
Gaurav Rishi
VP of Product and Partnerships, Kasten by Veeam

KUBERNETES COMPLEXITY STILL AN ISSUE

Kubernetes' complexity will continue to be an issue. It's one of those technologies that everyone uses because they have to but nobody likes — sort of like Maven during the heyday of Java. (Or Maven still.) There have been a number of attempts to build something like Kubernetes, but simpler, including K3S, MDSO, and others. None of them seems to be gaining significant traction. In 2023, people will keep trying; someone may succeed.
Mike Loukides
VP of Emerging Tech Content, O'Reilly Media

Go to: 2023 DevOps Predictions - Part 6, covering APIs.

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